How to Master the Flat Lay Photo

We’ve all been there…you have the cutest stuff to #gram and you think you’ve laid it out perfectly. So you snap the pic and oh…the photo is too dark, the stuff that you arranged isn’t quite perfect, or you upload it to Instagram and half the picture is cut off. I’ve had all those problems and many more throughout my days of taking flat lay pics. But recently, I think I’ve gotten the hang of it. Actually, those flat lay pictures sometimes get more likes than a picture of me in a cute outfit (I’m fine, it’s fine)…and that just goes to show you how much people enjoy a professional looking, perfected flay lay picture. So anyway, I’m here today to give you all my tips on how to nail the flat lay #likeaboss.

1. Find a bright spot to take the picture

One of the worst things you can do (in my opinion) is to try and take a flat lay pic in a dark space or in a dimly lit area. Brightness is KEY. Natural lighting is the best because it won’t create any shadows and it will give you the crisp lighting you’re looking for. I usually take my flat lays on a white faux cow hide rug right near a bunch of windows.

2. Make sure your background is clean

The spot you’re taking the picture on should be clean and basic. Busy backgrounds will take away from your products. Make sure it doesn’t distract the viewer from what you’re actually photographing.

3. Shoot from directly above your layout

Shooting from a “birds-eye” view is the best and cleanest angle to use. I usually have my layout on the floor and this makes it super easy to take the pic…I just lean over the products to make sure I’m directly over them and snap away! If you’re shooting on a table or counter it will be a little harder. Grab a chair or stool and use that to get directly over your layout.

4. Have a theme

It’s important for each flat lay to have a theme. You shouldn’t throw a bunch of random stuff down and take a picture of it…people like to see things grouped together that complement each other and go well together. For example, take a flat lay of your favorite  shirt and then lay smaller pieces around to complement that or take a flat lay of what’s in your bag (lipstick, wallet, sunglasses). Just make sure the items your taking a picture of have something in common whether it be color, style, texture, product, etc.

5. Take time to lay your things out

Don’t just rush and throw them on the floor and take the picture (I’ve done that and it doesn’t end well). Take the time to lay them out so the photo looks as professional as possible. I love symmetry so a lot of times I will try to arrange things so they look as symmetrical as possible. Just try not to make it look messy or too cluttered.

6. Have a “main focus” piece

Each flat lay should have one or two main focus pieces, whether that’s your favorite shirt, or the lipstick you want to show off. It should be the main focus of your picture/theme so make sure it looks amazing! The picture should revolve around these focus pieces and every other product you add to the layout should just be there to complement and add some embellishment to it.

7. Tag Away!

Once your gorgeous professional looking flat lay is taken, upload it to the gram, and tag all the brands and products that are in it! This will ensure that you get the best views and exposure as possible.

flat lay for blog post 10:3 pic 5

flat lay for blog post 10:3 pic 4

Happy photographing!! If you would like to see some more of my flat lay photos head over to my instagram here



4 thoughts on “How to Master the Flat Lay Photo

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